Philippians: The Good Work of God


Pastor Jonathan Falwell


Philippians is a letter whose focus is on joy. Whether in suffering, service or worry, Paul makes it clear we should rejoice in the “excellence” of Christ. This short letter is full of encouragement to a people in desperate need of hope. The key encouragement is found in its opening words.


Philippians 1:3-6 (NKJV) I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine making request for you all with joy, for your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ

  • This is the real basis for joyful Christian fellowship, to have God at work in our lives day by day.”[1] – Warren Wiersbe


1. It starts in the Gospel

Philippians 1:20-21 (NKJV) according to my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death. 21 For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain

  • God has a clear and undeniable good work He wants to do in your life
  • This work begins the moment we believe in Christ’s redemptive work
  • Understanding we cannot lose when we live in the power of the Gospel


2. It is continued in love

Philippians 2:1-4 (NKJV) Therefore if there is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and mercy, fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others

  • Genuine love for others is the beginning point for understanding the power of God’s work
  • Seeing people as God sees them is a necessary step


3. It is in focusing on what really matters

Philippians 3:7-10 (NKJV) But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith; 10 that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death

  • We must set aside the things the world believes are important for the things God says are important
  • Matthew 16:26 For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?


4. It is secured by His gracious hand

Philippians 4:6-7 (NKJV)  Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

  • When everything seems to be falling apart, God provides what the world can’t imagine
  • “The position of the believer is not simply one of waiting for an absent Lord to return; it is also one of enjoying the reality of a Lord who is always present.”[2] – J.A. Motyer
  • Let go of worry and let God lead
    • Prayer is the starting point
    • Thankfulness is the posture
    • Seeking Him is invited
    • He will guard your heart

[1] Warren W. Wiersbe, The Bible Exposition Commentary, vol. 2 (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1996), 65.

[2] J. A. Motyer, The Message of Philippians, The Bible Speaks Today (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1984), 207.